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Post-Draft Dynasty Rookie Wide Receiver Tiers, Rankings: Should You Draft Brian Thomas Jr. Or Xavier Worthy?

Ted ranks the top rookie wide receivers for Dynasty fantasy football formats following the 2024 NFL Draft.

DETROIT, MICHIGAN - APRIL 25: (L-R) Marvin Harrison Jr. poses with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell after being selected fourth overall by the Arizona Cardinals during the first round of the 2024 NFL Draft at Campus Martius Park and Hart Plaza on April 25, 2024 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Well, I’d say the 2024 class of wide receivers lived up to the hype in the NFL Draft. A record-tying seven wide receivers were selected in the first round, including three in the top 10 picks. Three of the first five picks of the second round were also receivers, and, in total, we saw a whopping 35 receivers selected between Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Without further ado, let’s see how the top 20 of those players stack up for Dynasty fantasy football purposes:

Dynasty Rookie Wide Receiver Tiers

Tier 1: Marvin Harrison Jr.

1. Marvin Harrison Jr., Arizona Cardinals (Round 1, Pick 4)

Before I talk about MHJ, just a note about how I’m going to be using tiers in this article: If two players are in the same tier, that means I wouldn’t think twice if someone drafted one over the other, even if it technically went against my rankings … but I would look at someone sideways for reaching between tiers. But that is going to happen plenty because, at the end of the day, Dynasty drafts, just like the real NFL Draft, are a crap shoot, with everyone coming to their own conclusions, and the vast majority of those conclusions being wrong.

With that said, this first decision is the easiest of them all. Marvin Harrison Jr. gets his own tier, and I don’t think I have to tell you why. He was the consensus best wide receiver (if not player, period) heading into the draft, then got the best draft capital and best first-round landing spot of the WR class, heading to the Cardinals with the fourth overall pick. MHJ will be Kyler Murray’s top target from the moment he steps on the field, and he will be a fantasy and real-life monster for years to come.

Tier 2: Would Be Tier 1 In Any Other Class

2. Malik Nabers, New York Giants (Round 1, Pick 6)

From what I’ve seen on Dynasty Twitter and in my own rookie drafts, Malik Nabers is now the consensus WR2 in this class. In fact, I strongly considered giving him his own private second tier. Nabers isn’t quite as flawless a prospect as MHJ, but he now adds great draft capital and a good landing spot (I’m more excited about his lack of target competition than I am worried about Daniel Jones) to an already elite profile. If we’re looking for nits to pick, Nabers ran over half of his senior-season routes from the slot, and his draft-class-leading 3.64 yards per route run falls to “only” 2.84 outside of the slot, but that’s still nothing to scoff at. With truly unique movement ability and a crystal-clear path to targets, Nabers is set to make both immediate and long-term fantasy impacts.

3. Rome Odunze, Chicago Bears (Round 1, Pick 9)

The only reason Nabers doesn’t get the second tier to himself is that Odunze is also just that good. A true X receiver with elite contested-catch ability, Odunze doesn’t win in the same way as Nabers, but he still wins. The main reason I have him below Nabers is that he has landed in a crowded situation in Chicago with two elite target earners in D.J. Moore and Keenan Allen already in town. It is true that Allen is getting older and I’m certainly not too upset at Odunze being tied to Caleb Williams for the foreseeable future. But his fantasy career is likely to get off to a relatively slow start; with the insane quality at the top of this class, that’s enough to see him fall to WR3.

Tier 3: These Ladds Are Worthy First-Round Picks … Brian

4. Ladd McConkey, Los Angeles Chargers (Round 2, Pick 2)

This is the first time that my rankings are straying from well-established consensus, so let me defend this pick: I like Ladd McConkey, and his profile feels more fantasy-friendly than those of the next two names in this tier. McConkey has an interesting prospect profile, with elite per-route numbers (the fourth-best yards per route run of any WR in this class) but terrible volume stats. Thanks to a combination of injuries and a part-time role even when he was healthy, McConkey caught just 30 passes for 483 yards in his final season at Georgia. This means he grades out horrendously in metrics like dominator rating and yards per team pass attempt, which are usually very predictive. But the Chargers, who traded up to add McConkey with the 34th overall pick, clearly weren’t too concerned about his part-time usage, so I’m not either. Just looking at what he did while he was on the field, McConkey is a plus route runner and athlete, and, even if he has to shift to the slot in the pros, he looks like a good fit for the kind of high-volume role we love for fantasy. McConkey should be able to see plenty of volume for the Chargers, who had absolutely no difference-makers left in their passing game following the offseason departures of Mike Williams and Keenan Allen. Yes, Jim Harbaugh wants to run the ball, but Justin Herbert’s likely WR1 is still going to be a fantasy asset worth chasing.

5. Brian Thomas Jr., Jacksonville Jaguars (Round 1, Pick 23)

For most of the offseason, Brian Thomas Jr. was the consensus WR4 after the big three of MHJ, Nabers, and Odunze, and it’s not hard to see why. With an elite combination of size and speed, BTJ is a prototypical vertical threat, and he’s not one-dimensional either. The only reason I’m ranking McConkey above Thomas is that I think the LSU product is less likely to be a high-volume receiver from Day 1 in the NFL. Where the Chargers have essentially no established receiving options, Jacksonville has a target-hog in the slot in Christian Kirk, not to mention last year’s target leader among tight ends in Evan Engram. These two are very close, and if you’re looking for upside, I’d probably take Thomas. But I think McConkey’s advantage in situation makes up for the gap in their prospect profiles, so Thomas is just barely my WR5.

6. Xavier Worthy, Kansas City Chiefs (Round 1, Pick 28)

Worthy has actually gone before both Thomas and McConkey in most of my rookie drafts so far. To be fair to my leaguemates, the idea of the fastest man in the history of the NFL Combine playing with Patrick Mahomes is certainly tempting, especially because Worthy is NOT just a speed merchant. But I am not convinced he’s as well-rounded a receiver as the names above him. Plus, thanks to Travis Kelce and Rashee Rice dominating targets underneath and the arrival of Marquise Brown, Kansas City isn’t as good of a landing spot as it once was. Worthy is also very small, weighing in at just 165 pounds at the Combine. The success of DeVonta Smith (and Tank Dell) has reduced some of the stigma around light receivers, but Worthy’s size is still undeniably a roadblock between him and true WR1 status. There’s a chance Worthy is very valuable to the reigning Super Bowl champs but still plays too limited a role to be a great fantasy asset, which is why I’m lower on him than most. With that said, first-round draft capital and a solid production profile (including an absurdly young breakout season) make Worthy still a great pick at the end of the first round of rookie drafts.

Tier 4: Pick Your Poison

7. Ricky Pearsall, San Francisco 49ers (Round 1, Pick 31)

Pearsall is this high because I’m assuming all the smoke coming out of the Bay Area will eventually turn into a fire, with one of Brandon Aiyuk or Deebo Samuel being traded. If that does happen, Pearsall is headed to a great situation as the WR2 on arguably the league’s best offense. And he’s not just a situation pick either: Pearsall is a favorite of film grinders for his route-running ability, which should serve him well, as a slot WR at least, in the NFL. With at least one elite WR in front of him (not to mention George Kittle and Christian McCaffrey) and no truly standout traits, the newest Niner doesn’t have much upside, but he has the highest floor of this whole tier.

8. Keon Coleman, Buffalo Bills (Round 2, Pick 1)

In many ways, Coleman is the opposite of Pearsall, not creating much separation and instead making his money with elite contested-catch ability. He didn’t have particularly impressive production at Florida State, but he has plenty of raw potential as a 6’3″ not-yet-21-year-old. That profile makes him much riskier, but it also comes with higher upside if he does happen to hit … as does playing with Josh Allen. I’m honestly not the biggest fan of Coleman, but every player in this tier has question marks, so Coleman’s upside means he lands here.

9. Xavier Legette, Carolina Panthers (Round 1, Pick 32)

Legette is a very tough player to evaluate. His 1,255 senior-year yards, elite YAC ability, impressive athleticism, and Round 1 draft capital paint a picture of a future star. But he took five years to do literally anything in college, not breaking even 170 yards in any of his first four seasons at South Carolina. And even if we just look at his breakout senior season, questions can still be raised about his ability to separate consistently and run a variety of routes. Legette’s landing spot with the Panthers can also be looked at as either good (his only competition is Diontae Johnson and a rapidly aging Adam Thielen) or bad (their offense was beyond dreadful in 2023). I’m going to hedge my bets and drop Legette in the middle of this tier, but I think he is liable to either be the best player or the worst player out of this group when all is said and done.

10. Ja’Lynn Polk, New England Patriots (Round 2, Pick 5)

Another contested-catch specialist, Polk went higher in the draft than many expected as the 37th player off the board. He also is headed for a good landing spot in a Patriots offense that is desperate for playmakers to grow alongside new QB Drake Maye. I’m honestly tempted to move him up a slot or two … but I’m also tempted to move him down (this entire tier is very close in my eyes). With great production at Washington, solid draft capital, and a wide-open path to targets, Polk should get every chance to prove he belongs at the NFL level.

11. Adonai Mitchell, Indianapolis Colts (Round 2, Pick 20)

Mitchell was one of the biggest losers of the Draft, as the projected first-round pick fell close to the end of the second round. But there were already some red flags in his profile even before the draft: His production numbers were lackluster across the board, including a 1.72 yards per route run mark in 2023 that ranked 91st in this draft class. In Mitchell’s defense, he had talented teammates both in his first two years at Georgia and after transferring to Texas, and being an early declare at just 21.5 years old means he may have more room to grow. There’s also a reason he was mocked in the first round, as plenty of experts reportedly LOVE the traits he put on tape … although the NFL clearly didn’t quite agree. Mitchell does seem like a natural fit in the Alec Pierce role in the Colts’ offense, the question is whether he can continue to grow and turn that role into more than a few deep shots a game.

Tier 5: Most Of These Guys Will Bust

After those first 11 receivers are off the board, we start to get into true dart-throw territory, with players taken in the third and fourth rounds of the NFL Draft (plus Malik Washington, whom I am probably way too high on). There’s something to like about each of these players, but the chance that any particular member of this group becomes a true fantasy difference-maker is very low. On the other hand, it’s simultaneously very likely that at least one of them will hit (this sounds like a contradiction, but it isn’t), so these darts are certainly worth throwing.

  • 12. Malachi Corley, New York Jets (Round 3, Pick 1)
  • 13. Jermaine Burton, Cincinnati Bengals (Round 3, Pick 16)
  • 14. Troy Franklin, Denver Broncos (Round 4, Pick 2)
  • 15. Roman Wilson, Pittsburgh Steelers (Round 3, Pick 20)
  • 16. Javon Baker, New England Patriots (Round 4, Pick 10)
  • 17. Malik Washington, Miami Dolphins (Round 6, Pick 8)
  • 18. Jalen McMillan, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Round 3, Pick 29)
  • 19. Devontez Walker, Baltimore Ravens (Round 4, Pick 14)
  • 20. Luke McCaffrey, Washington Commanders (Round 3, Pick 37)